The Boatist

Sailboat Ownership, Translation Work and Tales of Minor Adventure

Retire early, be passionate, don't worry, die poor

Friday, November 23, 2012

The Amateur Boat Mechanic

Today I decided to solve the thermostat leak, at least to diagnose it. Little jobs like this can accumulate until they become overwhelming. Not to mention that it may take weeks, if not months, to have an out-of-stock part shipped here.

This time I taped paper towels over crucial areas to reveal the source of the leak. It didn't take long to see the results and, luckily, the thermostat housing is not cracked, as I had feared. The culprit turned out to be a wire clamp that had cut into the hose. Woooh, what a relief.
Kubota heating hose
How to discover a leak with paper towels. The towel around the hose got soaked immediately.
Had lunch, with an extra glass of wine to celebrate and went for a walk along the breakwater. I don't know if was the wine, the sunshine, the fact that I had no work to finish, but whatever it was, I decided to sit and enjoy the world around me and to forget everything else. This is what I'm good at doing; it's my mantra and what I'm missing most in life. I was born to be Zen - but not a Zen monk, mind you!

It was warm and I wore a jacket to carry accessories (camera, phone, wallet, keys) and as insurance against a cool breeze that did not materialize. I sat there for nearly an hour (which seemed like a long time - which is good) and admired the serene look of the fishermen who spend hours fishing off the breakwater apparently without a care in the world. Yes, I realize that they probably envy me as I step aboard a 39-foot sailboat, but we all know how that story goes, don't we?
Fishing Boats in Peniche
What could be better than sitting here watching the coming and going of fishing boats?
Something to smile about. Why do photographs insist on making me look bald? That's not what I see in the mirror and mirrors don't lie, as Leonard Cohen said.
Peniche Port Entrance
The blue bicycle
Seagull Beach
Seagull Beach and fish bait cages in the water.
Before going home, I introduced myself to the unlucky sailor who was reading a novel in his cockpit. He's a very polite, soft-spoken man suffering from very sore ribs. It turns out that Nigel is British but lived in Toronto for 37 years until he retired. He fell in the galley against the stove and cracked his ribs when a wave jolted his boat over on its side. That's all I know because I'm not a snoop and this isn't a gossip column.


  1. Paper towels are the way to go! I still got them around water pumps and fittings (not the engine) just to make myself feel better.
    And I also try to look up in a pose. Otherwise my growing forehead reflects the sun and... "my eyes" my eyes!!"
    Enjoy the warm weather. Winter is around the corner...

  2. That pose doesn't work for me, my eyes are deep-set - that's why I look like an unhappy thug.
    Now you're a city dweller again with the boat on the hard and the weather becomes secondary.

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